Certification Application Instructions
The Pennsylvania Department of Education (PDE) is now requiring all certification applications be submitted through an online application process. The website address is www.pa-tims.com - Teacher Information Management System.
Students will complete their application online and pay with a credit card. It is important to remember that Teacher Certification is granted through the Pennsylvania Department of Education (PDE) and is separate from your graduation from Shippensburg University. The certification process is a very important step for your future.
NOTE: Your initial certification application should be for your major(s) area only. Add-on certification may be applied for after the initial certification has been granted by PDE.
Important information regarding the new TIMS system:
Certification applications should not be filed through TIMS until the first day of the month of your graduation. (December 1 for fall graduates or May 1 for Spring graduates)
The online application will assure that your application is in PDE's system immediately. ALL parts of the online application must be completed. Make sure you include your affiliation with Shippensburg University and include that you have graduated (or will be graduating) from an educator preparation program at our University. Do NOT list other institutions and do NOT list student teaching as teaching experience.
Unanswered questions could result in delay of processing your application by PDE. If there is a delay, you may contact the Office of Field Experiences and Partnerships one time to verify that you have been recommended. All problems with your application can only be answered or corrected by PDE. Do not call Shippensburg as we do not have the ability to change anything in TIMS.
Any questions regarding your application status should be directed to PDE as only they can make corrections, assist you with errors and give you status updates. Shippensburg's role is twofold: 1) to verify that you completed an educator preparation program and are eligible for certification 2) to recommend you for a teaching certificate based on your good moral character. This will be done once degrees are conferred,which could take several weeks after graduation. The PDE certification office phone number is 717-787-3356. The new Call Center hours will be Monday and Wednesday through Friday from 8 a.m. to 4:30 p.m.
Once you have submitted your application,you can periodically check the status through TIMS. PDE is no longer printing teaching certificates and it is your responsibility, once approved, to sign in to TIMS and print your certificate.
If PDE requires additional information to process your application, it should be mailed, along with your cover sheet that includes the bar code to:
BUREAU OF TEACHER PREPARATION AND CERTIFICATION
PENNSYLVANIA DEPARTMENT OF EDUCATION
333 MARKET STREET
HARRISBURG PA 17126-0333
Additional information on applying for certification can be found on PDE's website at http://www.education.state.pa.us/portal/server.pt/community/pa_certification/8635